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Featured TV on DVD Review: Archer: Season Three

January 7th, 2013

Archer: Season Three - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray

I've reviewed the previous two seasons of Archer and quite frankly, I think it's one of the best animated shows on TV at the moment. Can season three live up to the first two seasons? Or will the show finally show signs of leveling off?

The Show

At the end of season two, Sterling Archer (H. Jon Benjamin) was getting married, but his wedding was interrupted and his fiancee was killed. The season premiere, Heart of Archness, starts with Archer in hiding and while his mother, Malory Archer, is desperate to find him, none of the agents at ISIS really give a damn. Because of that, Malory is forced to hire Rip Riley, manly manhunter. He tracks him down in no time, but there's still a problem trying to get him back to ISIS, as Archer has no interest going back home and restarting his life as a spy and in his attempt to get out of going back, he causes Rip's seaplane to crash in the middle of the ocean. This is bad, but at least he gets to live out a lifelong dream of shooting a shark in the face... and then becoming a pirate king, with Noah as his first mate. It doesn't last and soon he goes from Pirate King to pirate prisoner.

After the pirate adventure, Archer gets to meet his hero, Burt Reynolds, and it is everything he hoped the meeting would be... until he discovers Burt Reynolds is dating his mother. Cyril is forced into the field after Ray (Adam Reed) is injured during Archer's rescue. (Again, for a cartoon, this show actually cares about continuity.) Meanwhile, Cheryl, Pam (Amber Nash), and Ray have to undergo drug tests, which they will all fail. Fortunately Krieger (Lucky Yates) has a way to beat the test. Unfortunately, there are side effects. In The Limited, ISIS has to transport a terrorist to Canada... a Canadian terrorist. Awesome. The episode has guest appearances by three leads from Trailer Park Boys. It's Archer's birthday in Drift Problem and his mother bought him a super spy car, but if he crashes it or it's stolen, he's in deep trouble. It is stolen almost immediately and Archer has to deal with the Yakuza, the leader is played by George Takei. Speaking of deep trouble, Malory summons Archer and Lana to her house because...

Over on disc two starts with a big reveal in Bloody Ferlin, which I won't get into. However, Archer and Ray and Cheryl are going to save Ray's brother, Randy, from a corrupt cop, E.Z.. Meanwhile, Archer hits on Janelle, Randy's wife. In Crossing Over, Archer hooks up with... nope, not going to say. In the meantime, Nikolai Jakov (Peter Newman) is defecting to the United States, and it Archer's job to protect him. In Skin Game Krieger gives Archer a surprise, he's brought back Katya, Archer's finance, as a cyborg. He's overjoyed at first, but... The season ends with the two-part episode, Space Race. There is a mutiny aboard the international space station and ISIS is hired to go into space and stop the mutiny. Things don't go very well.

Last time I pointed out the highlight episodes, this time around, they are all highlight episodes. There is not a single episode that isn't fantastic. It is the best animated show currently on TV.

The Extras

Disc one has audio commentary tracks on three episodes with a variety of the cast, always with Adam Reed, the creator. Over on disc two, there's Heart of Archness extended edition. There's a two-minute look at Archer trying to record the audio book for How to Archer. Cooking With Archer has archer hosting a cooking show with Alton Brown. There is a fake trailer for Gator 2. Finally, there's a three-minute clip that was shown at Comic Com.

I don't have the Blu-ray to compare, but it only costs 28% more than the DVD, which is good for TV on DVD releases.

The Verdict

The third season of Archer is even better than the first two seasons, and that's saying a lot . The extras on the DVD and the Blu-ray are strong with audio commentary tracks on three episode, an extended season premiere, and more. It is easily a contender for Pick of the Week.

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Filed under: Video Review, Burt Reynolds, David Cross, Ona Grauer, Judy Greer, Paula Malcomson, Chris Parnell, Michael Rooker, George Takei, Aisha Tyler, Jessica Walter, Patrick Warburton, Jack McBrayer